“What is open access? Nick Shockey and Jonathan Eisen take us through the world of open access publishing and explain just what it’s all about.” (YouTube)
PHD Comics has an excellent explanation of what Open Access is all about. In brief, Open Access is the free, immediate, online availability of research articles with full re-use rights, available to everyone all over the world, making the research literature much more valuable. In the video, they talk about their experiences with publishers, paywalls, prices, and open access, and what they think should change.
A more indepth article about Open Access can be found over at Nature (a subscription journal, but with several open access articles). There are some great infographics as well, showing the rise of open access, and the cost of publishing.
I believe in Open Access, and believe it’s the future of publishing. There have been too many times I’ve been frustrated to find a article I would like to read locked behind a paywall because the institution I’m at doesn’t have a subscription to it. I’m sure there are many, many other scientists who feel the same. Onwards!